ID bracelets are cool – and lifesavers

Students gathered around a table outside of Fireside Cafe with a computer,a large television and many boxes of bracelets reading “Xtremesports ID Never go out alone.” Five days earlier, Castleton State College’s President Dave Wolk was sporting one of these bracelets on his right wrist saying they are as close to the Castleton 343 green as possible.

Xtremesports ID brought the idea of the potentially life-saving bracelets to Wolk in the form of Bryan Gillam, a company official who Wolk once served as a guidance counselor to.

The idea of marketing the bracelets across campus then went to Dean of Students Dennis Proulx. He signed up right away because he thought it was a good idea, especially with the “where am I feature” where students can update where they are going in case something happens.

“Any student who has a life should have one,” Proulx said.

The bracelets are essentially a glorified Medic Alert bracelet with that allows emergency officials to access vital records and contact information through numbers on them.

Originally the company started with the athlete in mind, but is now setting their focuses elsewhere.

“We thought the college student was the perfect client,” said Gillam.

Gillam isn’t just a pitchman either, saying his life was saved by the bracelet on his wrist. He was lying on the couch and got a horrible headache. But it wasn’t a headache – it was a stroke.

While driving himself to the hospital, the police pulled him over. The officer called an ambulance for him, but because of the bracelet, by the time he had gotten to the hospital they already had all of his information because they had gotten it from calling the number on the black Xtremesports ID bracelet he was wearing.

Students received a free bracelet and a one-year free subscription when they picked them up then it’s $5 a year. The bracelets will also be sold to alumni and parents for $10 dollars, a portion of which will be going back to the college.

Castleton is the first college to have the bracelets, but Gillam said another school in California is likely to follow suit.

The handing out of the bracelets seemed to have gone very well. By 9:30 a.m. last Tuesday, a quarter of them had been given out to students and staff, said Josh Wedel, head of the Northeast accounts. By the end of the day, they were all gone and 20 percent had been registered by the next day, said Gillam.

Some students even woke up early to make sure they got one. Junior, Laura Thomas said she left for school about a half hour early to get hers. Thomas thought they were cool because they are Castleton green with two Spartan symbols printed beside the medical symbol – and because they are useful.

“They are great for someone like me who has a lot of allergies,” Thomas said.

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